Litigation Release No. 23736 / February 1, 2017

Securities and Exchange Commission v. Samuel DelPresto, et al., No. 15-cv-8656 (JLL) (D.N.J. filed Dec. 15, 2015)

Market Maker Settles Charges in Fraudulent Pump-and Dump Scheme

Washington, D.C., January 31, 2017 - The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that Darren Goodrich has agreed to admit wrongdoing and pay more than $805,000 to settle charges the agency filed against him for his role in facilitating a scheme to manipulate the stocks of BioNeutral Group, Inc., NXT Nutritionals Holdings, Inc., Clear-Lite Holdings, Inc. and Mesa Energy Holdings, Inc. The settlement is subject to court approval.

According to the SEC's Second Amended Complaint filed on November 17, 2016, Goodrich facilitated the profitable dumping of the issuers' stock by using his dual role as market maker and registered representative to arrange for coordinated and matched trading between and amongst accounts owned or controlled by his cohorts. Goodrich also pleaded guilty today to criminal charges filed by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of New Jersey.

The SEC's action in this matter also names as defendants Samuel DelPresto and MLF Group, LLC, both of Holmdel, New Jersey and Donald Toomer of Las Vegas, Nevada, all of whom the SEC previously charged with fraud for their respective roles in the alleged scheme. The SEC's action continues against these defendants.

The SEC's investigation was conducted by Rhonda L. Jung, Teresa A. Rodriguez, Melissa Coppola, Nancy A. Brown, Adam S. Grace and Wendy B. Tepperman, and the case is being supervised by Lara S. Mehraban. The SEC appreciates the assistance of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of New Jersey, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

For further information, see SEC Files Charges in Multi-Million Dollar Market Manipulation Press Release No. 2015-279 https://www.sec.gov/news/pressrelease/2015-279.html and SEC Charges Financial Advisor in Market Manipulation Case Press Release No. 2015-286 https://www.sec.gov/news/pressrelease/2015-286.html